clam·shell | \ˈklam-ˌshel \

Definition of clamshell 

1 : the shell of a clam

2a : a bucket or grapple (as on a dredge) having two hinged jaws

b : an excavating machine having a clamshell

c : either of a pair of doors (as in an airplane tail) that open out and away from each other

d : a hinged container, case, or cover that opens like the shell of a clam

Examples of clamshell in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In 2011, there was Motorola’s Lapdock, an otherwise-useless clamshell powered by its Atrix 4G phone. David Pierce, WSJ, "Your Smartphone Is the Best Computer You Own," 23 May 2018 Serenity furniture and clamshell loungers are cushioned. David G. Molyneaux, miamiherald, "Carnival, that most American of cruise lines, won't return to Europe any time soon," 5 July 2018 The biggest issue, though, is not the price tag of the sweeping, clamshell-shaped station, built in western Kowloon near shopping malls, apartment towers and a new arts district. Austin Ramzy, New York Times, "Hong Kong Gives Mainland Police Sway in New Train Station," 15 June 2018 This is the project in a clamshell: Two 35-mile, 40-foot-wide tunnels under the delta from the estuary’s northern end on the Sacramento River to aqueducts at the southern edge. George Skelton,, "What do Southern Californians really get out of Gov. Jerry Brown's twin tunnels project?," 12 July 2018 The letter, which includes a leather clamshell case, is likely to be sold to a museum or private collector who will know how to properly preserve it, Livingston said. Mark Pratt, Fox News, "Martin Luther letter critical of Jews is up for auction," 10 July 2018 The battery lasts for up to 4 hours for audio playback, and the clamshell case holds three additional charges. Chris Welch, The Verge, "Sony’s futuristic earbuds are a pain in the present," 29 June 2018 Estimates showed replacements for foam clamshell containers would cost more than twice as much. Lorraine Mirabella,, "More eateries, businesses do away with plastic straws," 13 July 2018 Ditch the fuddy-duddy clamshell, Apple seemed to say, and use touchscreens and high-resolution tablet cameras and stylus pens instead. Lauren Goode, The Verge, "Apple leans on multimedia to convince schools that iPads are better than Chromebooks," 28 Mar. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'clamshell.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of clamshell

circa 1520, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for clamshell

Last Updated

23 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for clamshell

The first known use of clamshell was circa 1520

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More from Merriam-Webster on clamshell

See words that rhyme with clamshell Encyclopedia article about clamshell

Comments on clamshell

What made you want to look up clamshell? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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